Lincoln Riley cautions against return to campus too soon: Bringing players back June 1 is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard
Word has apparently reached Norman that the Southeastern Conference may bring athletes back to campus on June 1.
It’s important to note that nothing has been decided and that is only the initial date that is set to be discussed next week by the leaders of the SEC. June 15 is another date that is set to be discussed by the SEC.
While news of a potential return to campus for athletes has been met with excitement in SEC country, the same can not be said for Norman, Oklahoma.
Sooner coach Lincoln Riley offered up his thoughts on a potential return for athletes during a Thursday teleconference according to Parker Thune of Sports Illustrated. While noting he believes the 2020 season will be played, Riley believes returning athletes to campus in a timely manner could be key.
“I definitely think we’ll play,” Riley said. “When we play, I think everybody’s got to have a very open mind about this. We’re not the NFL. There are some very, very huge differences; this is a totally different deal. Bringing players back on June 1st is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever heard. But I do believe if we do it right and we don’t get ahead of ourselves, we’ll be able to play a season.”
The fact Riley mentions the June 1 date likely isn’t a coincidence considering the coach’s comments come just hours after news that the SEC plays to discuss a potential return on that date.
In addition that comment, Riley added these thoughts courtesy of Jason Kersey of The Athletic:
“In my opinion, we need to bring them in as late as possibly can before we play a season. Every day early that we bring them in is a day we could have gotten better. It’s a day we could’ve learned more about the virus. It’s a day PPE maybe gets better. It’s a day closer to a vaccine. It’s a day that our testing equipment and testing capabilities get better, and it’s just not worth it. So, we’ve gotta be patient. We get one shot at this, and we’ve gotta do it right.”